Blog archive: Yemen

  • 19th February 2018
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    A 329-page report by the UN's panel of experts on Yemen was published last week, and it makes grim reading. Yemen, as a state, has all but ceased to exist, it says. It also notes that during the three-year conflict there have been "widespread violations of international humanitarian law and...
  • 2nd February 2018
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Russia has so far kept a low profile in the Yemen conflict – in contrast to its role in Syria – but that is now changing. Over the last few months it has been stepping up political and diplomatic contacts and advertising itself as a potential mediator. Given Russia's position in Syria, allied...
  • 30th January 2018
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    The official aim of the Saudi-led military intervention in Yemen is to restore the "legitimate" government of the internationally-recognised but unconstitutionally-elected President Hadi. That was always something of a fantasy and events during the last couple of months have made it even more...
  • 29th January 2018
    By
    Kristian Ulrichsen
    Fighting broke out in Aden yesterday between southern separatists and forces loyal to Yemen's internationally recognised president, Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi. This was not the first time they have clashed but yesterday's outbreak was the most serious so far. At least 10 people are reported to...
  • 11th December 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    When Yemen held parliamentary elections in 1997 Ahmed Ali Saleh, then aged 24, was a first-time candidate. Though new to politics, he won by a handsome margin – a victory that was no doubt helped by having his father, President Ali Abdullah Saleh, and many of the ruling party's elite as voters...
  • 5th December 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Ali Abdullah Saleh, who has been killed aged 75, held power in Yemen for almost 34 years – an extraordinary feat in one of the world’s most fractious countries. He likened his survival technique to “dancing on the heads of snakes” and his political career ended much as it had begun, in...
  • 28th September 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    The war in Yemen is one where western media coverage scarcely excels – as the Russian propaganda channel, RT, is quick to point out. But can RT do any better? To "clarify" the picture, RT called on Caleb Maupin, its "international correspondent", who gave what is surely the weirdest...
  • 22nd September 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Viewed from outside, the war in Yemen is mainly a two-sided conflict between the "legitimate" government of President Hadi and the Houthi rebels backed by ex-President Saleh. But this fails to recognise the extent of Yemen's fragmentation since the outbreak of war, a former government minister...
  • 5th September 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    A public relations firm which became notorious for assisting dodgy regimes – including several in the Middle East – has finally got its comeuppance. London-based Bell Pottinger has been expelled from the PRCA (the trade body for "respectable" PR firms) for bringing the industry into...
  • 31st August 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Writing about conflicts in the Middle East for the New York Times yesterday, columnist Thomas Friedman talked of "the power that is lost to a society like Syria or Iraq that needs an iron fist to make its many into one, and when that fist is removed, how the society fractures into small shards"....
  • 24th June 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Burger King and Domino's Pizza have joined McDonalds in pledging allegiance to Saudi Arabia's new crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman. While McDonalds paid for a newspaper ad to announce its support (as I reported on Thursday), Burger King and Domino's have opted for a cost-free solution by...
  • 15th May 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    There are three possible outcomes to the war in Yemen: reconstruction as a single state, partition into two states – north and south – or fragmentation into multiple statelets. Of these, only a single state can offer some hope of a more secure future for the Yemeni people but the prospects for...

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